I haven't shared much from Fight for You with you guys yet, but wanted to share a little teaser today.
One of my absolute favorite things about this book is getting to watch the relationship between Michael and January unfold over the years. There's something so damn sweet about young love!
"Don't cry, baby girl," I plead with her. "Please don't cry."
"I'm sorry," she sobs, clinging to me.
"What happened?" I ask, rubbing her back in an attempt to calm her down.
"He found my birth control," she chokes out between sobs, still hiding her face in my throat.
My hands freeze on her back as soon as I process her words.
"Shit," I mutter, not sure what to say to that. No wonder he tackled me. He thinks I'm sleeping with his little sister.
She and I aren't having sex, but since she turned sixteen a few months ago, she's been pushing the issue. Holding her off is getting harder by the day. I want her so badly it hurts. I'm trying to do the right thing, but then she crawls into my lap, and all the reasons why we need to wait fall away. It's come close a few times before I was able to get myself under control, but I'm not sure how much longer that's going to last.
I'm constantly hard for her.
"He hates you now and it's all my fault," she sobs. "I ruined your friendship!"
"He doesn't hate me," I tell her, hoping like hell he doesn't make a liar out of me. "And you didn't ruin our friendship. He's just worried about you."
Mandy thought she was pregnant about a year ago, and it freaked Titan the hell out. He's probably thinking about that, and worried that January will end up where he thought he was back then. I know Titan better than I know myself sometimes. He adores the girl currently clinging to me like her life depends on it. He always says that she's going to be the one who gets out of here and does something great with her life. There's no way he'd be okay with her getting pregnant at sixteen.
Hell, there's no way I'd be okay with her getting pregnant at sixteen. We're too fucking young to have kids. Between school, taking care of Ma Rose, keeping Kaleo from claiming this block, and all the shit that goes hand-in-hand with that responsibility, I barely have time to see my girl. There's no way I could juggle a kid on top of it. And there's no way I'm letting her jeopardize her future by becoming a teen mom. That's exactly why we decided that she needed to be on birth control. That's why I carry a condom everywhere I go. I'm not taking any chances.
Eventually, I know I won't be able to tell her no anymore. It's already hard as hell to keep pulling us back from the edge. As soon as I feel her soft hands on my body or she pulls her shirt off and puts my hands on her little body, I lose track of everything but her. I want her more than she knows. But when we finally do take that step, I want us both to be prepared.
"He's so mad at me."
"You were throwing shit at him, January." I don't mention the definite handprint across his cheek.
"Only because he said he was going to kill you!" she cries.
I shake my head, bemused at how upset she is over that. It's equal parts adorable and ridiculous. I love her for wanting to fight for me, but damn. She's five-two, and about one hundred and ten pounds soaking wet. If Titan really wanted to kill me, it'd take a hell of a lot more than a couple of well-aimed remotes to stop him. He lived up to his name. He's linebacker big, with a temper to match.
"I love you for trying to defend me," I tell her, tipping her head back and forcing her to look at me. Seeing the tears still shimmering in those long lashes breaks my heart all over again. She's too beautiful, like a little porcelain doll. She was made for laughter, not tears. "But no more throwing shit at him. He could have hurt you."
"He'd never hurt me," she protests, jumping to his defense.
"He'd never hurt you on purpose," I agree before she gets herself all wound up, trying to defend him this time. I swear to God, she's like a little lioness sometimes, so damn protective of me and Titan, it's absurd. What she thinks she's protecting us from when we run this fucking block and are over twice her size, I don't know. But she tries anyway. "He could have easily hurt you by accident, and then you'd both feel terrible."
"Okay," she agrees and then buries her face in my throat once more. She's not crying anymore though, thank God.
I close my eyes and just hold her for a little while. She's so soft and sweet. Her little body fits with mine like she was made to cradle my larger frame. She's soft where I'm hard. If there's anything better in the world than the feel of her in my arms, I don't know if I'll survive finding it. This is perfection enough for one man.
ABOUT FIGHT FOR YOU
Some men deserve redemption. Some men are worthy of salvation. I'm not one of them. My name is Michael Kincaid, and I've got so much blood on my hands, I'll never wash clean.
For ten years, I've tried to outrun my gangbanger past by burying myself in my work with the DEA. I've tried like hell to forget the day I damned my soul and lost everything…my family, my home, and the only girl I've ever loved.
I still can't outrun it.
No matter how far I go, January James haunts me. Being without her is killing me, but what other choice do I have? We were still kids the first time I vowed to protect her. Instead, I destroyed her.
Now one of my enemies—a local gang member—has it out for her. He isn't going to stop until she gives him the territory I left her all those years ago. I swore I'd never set foot in Los Angeles again, but January needs my protection, and I'm not nearly strong enough to say no.
She deserves better than me, but she's mine anyway. It's time to stop running and fight for her.
She's an angel. I'm the devil on her shoulder. And this is my swan song.
When it's over, I'll either be the monster at the end of this book…or I'll be the man she deserves.
Fight for You is the first book in a series of interconnected full-length novels featuring law enforcement officers willing to do whatever it takes to protect the women who need them most. Each book can be read as a standalone, has no cheating, and a guaranteed HEA.
Are you interested in helping launch Fight for You this October? I'd love to have you on the Launch Team! You can sign up via the link below! Launch Team members get all sorts of goodies in exchange for their help sharing Fight for You.